British Lion Ferris visits Bangor Rugby Club

ONE of Ulster’s most celebrated rugby stars paid a return visit to Bangor Rugby Club recently.

Former Ulster, Ireland and British Lions international Stephen Ferris made a visit to Upritchard Park, with the head of Domestic Rugby Development at Ulster Rugby, Chris Webster, and representatives of the National Lottery.

Stephen has teamed up with the National Lottery to celebrate individuals – in Bangor’s case, Stuart McCloskey – across the four nations who have done extraordinary things in their communities and beyond, particularly showcasing the importance of funding for grassroots clubs like Bangor RFC, one of the 50 clubs governed by Ulster Rugby.

The campaign shines a light on how the £30m raised a week by National Lottery players goes towards good causes across the UK.

The Upritchard Park clubhouse was the setting for several media interviews with Stephen, who then spent some time in a coaching session with the U14 and U16 youth players, before getting everyone together for a big shout of support for Stuart and the whole Ireland team in the Rugby World Cup.

This visit brought back memories of when Stephen was Bangor’s Youth Ambassador in 2011, and was involved in the development of the club’s youth rugby section at that time.

It was all the more pleasing, therefore, that one of the kids involved in those early days was now playing in the 3rd XV match later in the evening.

Stephen Ferris said: “I’ve had a terrific day here at Bangor RFC, meeting the teams and touring the grounds, seeing the impact that funding from the National Lottery has on

the sport. Investing in the grassroots game is essential.”

It was a pleasure having Stephen and the film crew at the club, and it provided a great opportunity to showcase Bangor Rugby Club’s wide range of participation at both local and international levels, while also helping to develop players of all abilities from primary school age right through to adulthood.